Thursday, November 22, 2007


The other day when i was talking to Charu about ERP, i told her that I would find the total market worth of ERP alias Material Resource Planning (MRP) as how it was previously know. But once i started to dig into it, I can’t help but gape at the mind-blowing potential of the field that she is working on because to find the total market value ERP I will have to find out the total number of organizations in U.S be it govt., non govt, private, public and even a small or large organizations since ERP has an important role to play in each of them.

An ERP is critical because it brings in a lot of efficiency into the organization since it integrates all the data and process of a company into a unified system. In other words it integrates the different departments like Manufacturing, supply chain management, financials, HR, Customer Relationship management and data warehouse of a company into one thus eliminating the usage of different applications for different departments that are not compatible or say communicate to one another.

In U.S for designing or providing ERP solution for a small scale company earns revenue about 30,000 USD and for a multi national or say a large scale company will bring in about 500 million USD. Plus they will also have to pay a gross sum for maintenance of the software.

SAP which is the largest European software company, Oracle applications, Saga groups, Microsoft dynamics and SSA global technologies are some of the big global ERP vendors. These organizations hold more than 50% of the global market share in which SAP alone holds about 28.7%. Infact, I was surprised to see Ramco Systems to be the biggest ERP vendor from India which earns revenue of roughly $60.1 million.

The toughest part of ERP seems to be implementing the ERP software since this is where experienced pple and specialists are needed. A company seeks the help of ERP vendor or a third party consulting company for 3 areas of professional service and they seem to be

· Consulting
· Customization
· Support

I guess you are currently working on customization and support but I have a feeling that consulting is where you see some big money since that is where business as a whole is taken care of.

Consulting for a big ERP project involves 3 levels; they are System Architecture, Business process consulting and technical consulting.

In System architecture you will have to design the overall data flow of an enterprise and will also have to see to it that it has scope for modifications and expansions in the future.

Technical consulting involves programming while Business process consulting seems to be a comparatively easier job where one has to study the organizations current business process and match it with the corresponding process or model in ERP system.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Solar Photovoltaic Technology

When everybody is looking at nuclear energy here is someone who looks at Solar Photovoltaic technology to satiate our energy demands. The estimated solar energy radiation falling over India is about 5000 trillion kWh a year which is enough to provide us 90kWh per capita, even if 1 % of the 5000 trillion kWh is harvested fruitfully. This technology looks at large the best technology to invest for our future energy demands considering the fact that there will always be a never ending supply of solar radiation which is highly unlikely in oil or even in nuclear energy.

As per the December 2005 records, there are already 13 lakh SPV systems with an aggregate capacity of 245 MW which is functioning in our country.

The flip side of this technolgy is the common silicon based SPV panels which are not only costly, it also has a conversion efficiency of only 10 %. In other words it needs 100 watts of electricity to create just 10 watts of SPV capacity. Added to it is that there is a acute shortage of pure silicon.

Ofcourse no one can discount the belief that these problems can be pretty much solved by determined research.